Market and Location Analyses

The market opportunities and risks are analysed in detail for a planned location. The work programme for a market and location analysis is composed as follows:

  • Presentation of the project data (sector, business type, sales area, supplementary utilisations, parking space availability, etc.)
  • Location description (description of the planned location and the relevant situation in the surrounding area) on the basis of up-to-date, on-the-spot surveys
  • SWOT analysis with detailed analysis of the location features for the planned utilisation
  • Description and evaluation of the competitive situation in the catchment area with a presentation of the relevant data for each competitive location and an appraisal of their competitive strength on the basis of up-to-date on-the-spot surveys
  • Delineation and zoning of the potential catchment area, and determination of the relevant socio-economic data (population, purchasing power level, purchasing power potential, etc.)
  • Forecasting, including the development of population and purchasing power within the catchment area
  • Analysis of the possible sales to be expected at the planned object
  • Summary of analysis of the market and location situation

Short Location Checks

A short location check is a more concise and therefore more low-cost version of the market and location analysis.

The difference between a short location check and a market and location analysis may be seen in the following points:

  • A detailed description and evaluation of the competitive situation is carried out only for the local catchment area; other competitive locations are listed, but are not described or evaluated in greater detail
  • No forecasting of the development of population and purchasing power within the catchment area
  • Generally concise, less detailed presentation


Location Profiles

A location profile permits an initial appraisal of the potentials of a location based on desk research of the relevant market data.

However, later on it is advisable to carry out a market and location analysis or a short location check in order to safeguard an investment decision. The contents of a location profile are:

  • Short description of the macro-location, i.e. the town, municipality or region (position in the area, traffic connections, town-centre function, etc.)
  • List of the potential competitive locations within the area under study
  • Delineation and zoning of the potential catchment area, and determination of the relevant socio-economic data (population, purchasing power level, purchasing power potential, etc.)
  • Summary and recommendations on how to proceed further


Branch Network Analyses

Based on the location positions of existing store branches and on the relevant market data, a detailed analysis of the branch network structure is carried out.

If need be, the respective logistical locations can be integrated into the analysis as well. In the basic package of a branch network analysis, all locations and areas will (among other factors) be identified which

  • still have sufficient potential, which round out or systematically complete the existing location network and are therefore suitable for further expansion
  • already display high location density, so that any further densification would lead to "cannibalisation effects", or which
  • may already be displaying marked "cannibalisation effects".

Founded on the basic package presented above, a detailed analysis of market penetration can be carried out at a local, regional, national and international level, including sales data or information on the geographic origin of customers at the individual locations. As well as key figures and benchmarks for each store branch, important information for marketing planning can (among other things) be deduced from these.


Competitive Analyses

Within a defined geographic area - usually the delineated catchment area of a planned project or one which is already in operation - the total relevant competition is surveyed and analysed.

Each competitive location is thereby evaluated on the basis of a specific criteria table, and also examined with regard to its specific strengths and weaknesses.
Based on such a competitive analysis, the opportunities and risks within this competitive environment can be evaluated, specific approaches can be developed for successfully cultivating the market, and the possibilities of developing a USP (Unique Selling Proposition) for an existing or planned location can likewise be deduced.


Country Analyses

Within the framework of cross-border location expansion, and also in the development of new markets, reliable information on the general economic, social and legislative conditions in these countries is needed.

Ecostra Country Analyses contain detailed data on factors including the growth of the gross domestic and also gross regional product, the economic structure, the development of income and purchasing power, the expenditure of private households (shopping basket), population figures and trends, the investment climate and still more. In addition, the capital cities and the most important metropolises are described in greater detail (e.g. main shopping areas, shopping centers, area rental prices)


Consumer and Customer Surveys

Do you know the needs and wishes of your customers? Why do they make shopping decisions in your favour? Why do sales shift to your competitor? Hone your profile based on your strengths, while at the same time eliminating weak points. Recognize trends in time and you'll be able to react to any change in customer wishes and customer behaviour!

In keeping with the specific task assignment, a coordinated catalogue of questions is developed in cooperation with the client. On this basis, a well-grounded, representative consumer or customer survey is carried out. This may - according to what is needed - be carried out in one of the following forms:

  • Face-to-face interviews (e.g. at the point-of-sale)
  • Questionnaires
  • Telephone interviews
  • Meetings of "focus groups"

The results will be printed out in an annotated report containing not only tables and diagrams, but also, above all, detailed explanations, comments and conclusions. If desired, the results can of course also be presented and elucidated verbally in front of a select group.


Customer Origin Analyses

Up-to-date, detailed customer data is becoming ever more important in marketing planning. In addition to the task assignments for motivation research, which frequently demand a complicated study design, a simple customer origin analysis can already provide important and rapidly-available basic data.

The compilation of customer origin data may, for example, be carried by ecostra out through:

  • Face-to-face interviews (e.g. at the point-of-sale)
  • Car number plates in the car park, or on access and exit roads

A survey of car number plates thereby not only presents the most cost-effective approach to conducting a study, but at the same time can, for example, be carried out at competitors locations, enabling the integration of data about the competition in the analysis. On the other hand, the point-of-sale survey also enables analysis of market penetration at a very small-scale level, coupling the shopping receipt with customer origin.


Seminars and training courses for expansion department managers, center managers and branch managers

According to choice, the latest findings on questions of market and location development, business type development, methods for location selection and evaluation, branch network optimisation, shopping center planning, etc. are communicated in an intensive seminar, under the guidance of experienced ecostra experts.

If desired, specific cases from the current day-to-day work of the participants can be worked on as examples. According to choice, the seminars can be booked as one-day events (9 a.m. to 5 p.m.) or as half-day events (9 a.m. to 1 p.m. or 1 p.m. to 5 p.m.). The participants at the intensive seminars receive a conference transcript documenting the lectures and the presentations given by ecostra, as well as a compilation of the relevant expert literature on the chosen subject.



ecostra provides lecturers on topics concerning market and location development in the retail trade, as well as other aspects of the business property market, at conferences, symposia and other events.

Lecture topics include:
  • The 1a location is top! Is everything else a flop? Do secondary shopping areas still have a chance?
  • The future of trade in the city. Trends, experiences and measures.
  • Aspects of location evaluation and selection in the context of branch network densification and optimisation in the retail trade
  • Shooting through the market at 1,000 volts. New winning concepts in trade
  • Go east! Property development in Central & East European Countries
  • The city center as an investment grab?
  • Conquering and defending market positions - future-oriented location development in trade
  • Factory Outlet Centers - location requirements - how they work, and experience of the effects on retail trade structures, labour market and tourism, etc.